“In Tuscan fields, the winds in odours steeped”: Mary Shelley’s Tuscany
Mary Shelley loved Italy, the country where she resided for more than five years – from 30 March 1818 to 25 July 1823 – after fleeing England with her husband, who left unpaid debts behind him. Tuscany is where the couple lived longest, and the region figures prominently in Mary’s writings. Referring, occasionally, to the author’s letters and journals, and Percy Bysshe Shelley’s poetry and letters, my article intends to explore the various forms such a presence assumes in a selection of works, notably the novel Valperga (1823), the narrative essay “Recollections of Italy” (1824), and the story “A Tale of the Passions” (1823). From this survey, it will emerge how Tuscany is present with its landscape and topography, climate, language, literature, history, traditions, and the daily life of the common people.
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—, Valperga: or, The Life and Adventures of Castruccio, Prince of Lucca, ed. TILOTTAMA RAJAN, Peterborough (Ontario), Broadview Press, (1823) 1998.
—, Valperga. Vita e avventure di Castruccio, principe di Lucca, eds LILLA MARIA CRISAFULLI and KEIR ELAM, Milano, Mondadori, (2007) 2021.
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